The Aged P

…just toasting and ruminating….

Archive for the 'Politics' Category

16 January
Comments Off on You Knew It Had To Come…..”Margaret Thatcher Should Be Sentenced To Death For Mass Murder”

You Knew It Had To Come…..”Margaret Thatcher Should Be Sentenced To Death For Mass Murder”

It’s inevitable. Mention Thatcher (or Palin or Bush or Blair) and the looney tunes pour out of the sewers.

So stand aside Stalin with your NKVD killing squads and your gulag. Get to the back Mao and your famines and Red Guards. Ignore Hitler’s SS and death camps. Forget Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge killing fields.

There’s a new mass murderer in town.

Margaret Thatcher.

That’s right. Elizabeth Farrelly’s snarky little memoir of her brief sojourn in London at the height of the “Thatcher Regime” smoked out a comment which referenced one Paul Treanor, a passionate opponent of the nation state and crusader for collectivism who uses Russian statistics to “prove” that free market economies shorten life expectancy and since Thatcher’s free market ideas were copied by countries all over the world she is clearly directly responsible for mass murder.

If the free market has caused about one-third of all deaths, in market economies, over the entire period of their existence, then the market has killed hundreds of millions of people. More than all wars, and more than the impact of a one-kilometre meteorite

Treanor believes that Thatcher should be tried and sentenced by a special tribunal and, naturally, there could only be one outcome.

A European Tribunal for Thatcher would be a sign, that Europe intends to remedy this defect of the British nation state. Such a tribunal should have the power to apply the death penalty, the most appropriate penalty for mass murder.

Of course, being a tankie, Treanor would be quite familiar with tribunals imposing death penalties. He would also assume that statistics published by the Soviet Union were totally honest, though others might disagree. But the true significance of his ill constructed ramblings has nothing to do with facts and figures or with constructing a case.

It is about the construction of a narrative. A narrative which aims to sabotage the argument for individual responsibility and limited government that underpinned Thatcher’s policies – for what worried the collectivist consensus was her popular appeal and the impact her electoral successes had on subsequent political generations.

So the counter myth of brutal Thatcher capitalism gained currency in those elite circles that had the most to lose from the decline in state power – the cartels….the bureaucrats, the academics, the planners and the pressure groups who all depend on the public teat for their well financed comforts.

Treanor’s looney tunes ramblings are merely a useful tool to justify their convictions – and in today’s climate it is more than likely that some BBC documentary maker or Hollywood producer could use them as the basis for a smooth piece of Michael Moore style agitprop that would mainstream the concept of Thatcher and her free market ideas as the willing agents of the grim reaper.

They wouldn’t deny the slaughters of Stalin, Mao or Pol Pot, they would merely slip her into the discourse using the sly concept of equivalence.

The Stasi support group GRH are only the tip of an iceberg, comrades….

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12 January
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Thatcher’s Alzheimer’s Is Karmic Revenge Say A “Usual Suspects” Media Hackette…

Elizabeth Farrelly is a leading Australian architect and newspaper columnist. She has been described as a Renaissance woman during an Australian radio interview with an irritatingly pompous BBC type clone but, in fact, she came across as relatively down to earth with some surprisingly sensible comments about feminism and climate change.

Unfortunately, in a piece on the recent film about Margaret Thatcher, “The Iron Lady”, she comes across as nothing more than a standard Guardianista media hack parroting the North London chattering class dinner party musings that all too often are allowed to pass by default into an accepted universal mythology.

Farrelly, we are told, lived in London for a few years during the eighties – so, should we be ready for a shrewd and perceptive historical analysis of the times?

If only….

Everyone I knew, even the toffs, hated Thatcher with a passion. It was not just disagreement. It was hate.

That tells us more about Farrelly’s narrowly circumscribed social bubble than it does about Thatcher’s government. If indeed that were true how would it have been possible for her to win three elections in a row with ever increasing majorities? Those votes didn’t just come from London and the south east. The Tories dominated the industrial midlands and made substantial inroads in the north. Quite a large chunk of those votes also came from working class voters. To portray her as some sort of southern middle class dominatrix grinding the faces of the lower classes is merely one additional facet of the left/liberal mythology ceaselessly promulgated by our media elite.

Then even more false memory syndrome.

To shrink the whole of Britain into London, then remodel that vast relocated wealth into something as ugly and brittle as Canary Wharf was bad policy, pure and simple. To require the selling of council flats was also wrong, in social as well as urban terms.

Farrelly obviously had no experience of living on a council estate during the 60s and 70s. Poorly managed by disinterested and unresponsive bureaucracies most council tenants were perceived as a leaden lumpenproletariat by patronising local politicians of all parties. The right to buy at generous terms liberated hundreds of thousands of ordinary working people and gave many families their first opportunity to actually benefit from a capital asset once regarded as the reserve of the middle classes. The resulting transformation of many of these estates from untidy sinkholes to neatly ordered urban landscapes was in itself a vindication of Thatcher’s policy.

Radical architects hate not being able to impose their will on the sweaty multitudes because they crave a uniformity of taste and style. That’s why the Farrellys of the world hated Thatcher. She valued the individual above the masses. She was absolutely certain that the gentleman from Whitehall did not know best.

I did not even warm to her personally. The pearls and handbags, stagey voice and sprayed hair all seemed old-fashioned, phoney and tasteless. I was among those who, hearing that both Thatcher and Reagan had Alzheimer’s disease, took it as karmic revenge.

Karmic revenge..

Funny how the liberal/left are allowed to vent their spleen in quite unpleasant terms and assume they are allowed to be given a pass. Yet at the end of the day it’s really Farrelly who is the museum piece…old fashioned, phoney and tasteless. That anti Thatcher horse was flogged to death many years ago.

You see, Ms Farrelly, unlike you I lived in Britain during the pre Thatcher days of the 50s, 60s & 70s and I can assure you it was no golden age…….

BTW…link to Farrelly’s piece fixed, thanks to my eagle eyed son...

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23 November
Comments Off on Why There Is No “Occupy Pyongyang” Movement
07 November
Comments Off on Why Guy Fawkes Is Just The Right Role Model for The Occupy Protesters…

Why Guy Fawkes Is Just The Right Role Model for The Occupy Protesters…

The Occupy protesters in the UK and USA have apparently adopted Guy Fawkes as their role model.

That figures…

For many years he had been a soldier in the Spanish army sent to crush the Dutch rebels who were fighting to win their independence

He was a terrorist who did not mind killing hundreds of people in his attempt to kill King James I

He wanted to turn England into a client state of Spain

He planned to kidnap the young daughter of King James and educate her as a Catholic to rule over a largely Protestant England as a puppet Queen using the Spanish Inquisition to suppress those who opposed the influence of Rome and Spain

By the beginning of the 1600s the English Parliament was beginning to see itself as a counter balance to the power of the monarchy – Fawkes and his Spanish minders believed Catholic monarchs ruled by divine right and should not be challenged

So…let’s see….

Guy Fawkes =Soldier in an army of occupation +Terrorist +Traitor +Kidnapper + Fanatic + Hater of an elected parliament….

Come to think of it – that mask is a perfect fit for those Occupiers…

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20 October
Comments Off on Obscure Old UK Blogger Skirmishes With Top UK Media Film Critic Over Palin…..

Obscure Old UK Blogger Skirmishes With Top UK Media Film Critic Over Palin…..

Why am I creepy? I’m hardly pro Palin, if that’s your insinuation.

What sort of person would use that as a defence?

But let’s begin at the beginning.

Perusing the UK Daily Telegraph online, yesterday (I refuse to put a portion of my hard earned pension into the wallets of the Barclay brothers for the dubious pleasure of reading the latest trillings from Bryony Gordon printed on a dead tree) I came across this review of Nick Broomfield’s documentary on Governor Palin by the DT’s film critic, Tim Robey.

Now as I am on a fixed income and therefore have to count my pennies I must confess that I don’t usually read Mr Robey’s pieces because I can rarely afford the luxury of a visit to the cinema or the renting of a DVD – it would be like pressing my nose against the toyshop window lusting for the £50 robot dog with my 25p clutched in my hand. But I understand in the world of the cultural media elite he is highly regarded by the great and the good (including that arbiter of all things artistic, Guy Lodge) and, on the few occasions I have read his musings, I have no reason to dispute the contention that his place in the higher levels of London’s Culture Heap is richly deserved.

So, having a passing interest in the world of US politics, I linked onto his Broomfield article to find out his opinion of the film.

To be fair to Mr Robey he wasn’t particularly impressed with it either technically or artistically. Of course he was rather sniffy about the Governor’s parents (“all homespun pieties” with “an impressive mountain of antlers in their yard”) and ended up with the usual stuff about the significance of “approval ratings” more than a year before an election but hey…what do you expect – he’s a film critic and it’s the Daily Telegraph for crying out loud….par for the course…

But then I read this..

There’s something creepy, for sure, about the fierce guarding of Palin’s reputation in town

…and I thought creepy? He thinks it’s creepy for people in Wasilla to treat Broomfield like something unpleasant stuck on the sole of your shoe?

So I looked up Mr Robey’s profile at the Telegraph, couldn’t get that word out of my head and took off for Planet Twitter

TheAgedP The Aged P The creepy @trim_obey at UK Telegraph creepily predictable on Broomfields Palin film (which bombed even with US left)tgr.ph/olVclY

Which prompted a reply which I initially regarded as hilarious but on further reflection seemed to be rather sad….

trim_obey Tim Robey @TheAgedP Why am I creepy? I’m hardly pro Palin, if that’s your insinuation.

He had assumed, I fancy, that I was some sort of lefty wingnut who had felt he was being too soft on her. Did he suddenly have visions of being cold shouldered at the next North London dinner party or struck off the BBC Newsnight invitation list for being a crypto Tea Partier or, even worse, another David Starkey?

Worrying….

What had triggered my response, however, was the fact that, although he had regarded the film’s technical and artistic values as rather shallow, Mr Robey had appeared to accept, at face value, Broomfields presentation of “the facts”

Gradually, though, the gossip they dig up from erstwhile friends and campaign managers – giving the lie to popularity-boosting Palin myths about her sports prowess and family life – prompts the communal cold shoulder.

I thought that was a sloppy piece of journalism, especially when I recollected what The New York Magazine had said about Broomfield in their review

• Broomfield wants to show what a superficial individual Palin is, so he includes a sequence about her alleged plastic surgery and Bump-it hairdo. Ah, sexist and inconsequential! Point: Palin!
• Broomfield attempts to highlight the suffering Palin caused others by introducing scandal after scandal, then cutting to a shot of its victims trashing Palin. The result: Regardless of the viability of their grievances, her enemies just look like spurned brats. Point: Palin!
• To try to paint a compelling portrait of Palin’s two-faced, evil nature, Broomfield regurgitates just about every blog post from the last three years, throws in clips of the Katie Couric interview (which at this point would put even Rachel Maddow to sleep), and digs into the revelation that Palin wasn’t actually nicknamed “Barracuda” because of her intensity on the high school basketball court, but rather because she liked the Heart song of the same name. Point: Palin!

The NYM is the newssheet of anyone who is anything in the hip cultural elite of US media, more Tina Brown than Tina Brown herself, light years from Wasilla and as Palin unfriendly as you can get – yet even they smelt something fishy about Broomfield.

Which is why I tweeted this

TheAgedP The Aged P @trim_obey a more honest review from a source that could never be described as Palin friendly http://bit.ly/r6LvKb

This obviously touched a nerve.

trim_obey Tim Robey @TheAgedP Perhaps that’s me being credulous, which you’re more than welcome to argue, but I don’t see how it’s dishonest.

There were further exchanges between us of a similar nature but I hope you get the drift of the debate, such as it was. There was, of course, no resolution. Mr Robey could obviously not accept my point that anyone who gets paid, probably quite generously, for writing in the public prints, needs to do a little of what R S McCain calls shoeleather on a topic or, at the very least, employ that golden “get out of jail” card of every hack – the word “alleged”

Should I have bothered? Was it worth all the hassle? I think it was. People like Sarah Palin, Herman Cain, Margaret Thatcher and other conservatives unafraid to challenge the assumptions held dear by a media/academic elite overwhelmingly imbued with the ideas of the liberal left will always have to endure the prospect of death by a thousand cuts – phrases, comments slipped so often into discourse that, Lysenko like, they become accepted as truisms. The beauty of the internet is that, at last, the journalists can be held to account. With a much smaller megaphone, of course, but at least something can be heard – though Mr Robey might not agree

trim_obey Tim Robey @TheAgedP Yes, I’m sure my media career is finished. Good luck with yours.

Heh – as Prof Reynolds would say – how about that Army of Davids?

PS…..I am distraught – I have been crucified by Guy Lodge himself…..

@GuyLodge:@TheAgedP @trim_obey What’s creepy about this back-and-forth, if I may, isn’t anyone’s stance on Palin, honestly influenced or otherwise…. It’s that you’d use a fairly coolly argued review as a springboard for a personal attack on someone you don’t know.

..as distinct from “a fairly coolly argued review” which implies that someone he doesn’t know who has a political background with which he appears to be totally unfamiliar has not discouraged untruths about herself for political gain, Mr Lodge?

Heh….

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19 August
Comments Off on Moral Panics? At The BBC It’s What We Do…..

Moral Panics? At The BBC It’s What We Do…..

Obviously over the last few days the great and the good at the BBC have become rather unsettled as control over the urban mob violence and looting narrative began slipping through their fingers.

Shocked by the tsunami of contempt that hit them when they tried to frame the discussion in terms of “protestors”, poverty and/or race the Beeboids and their allies in the left wing media/academic cultural elite have been desperately searching for a way of regaining control of the issue by shifting the parameters of the debate.

The initial attempt was laughably unsubtle. Making much of a bevy of leading police officers, spearheaded by ACPOs big cheese Sir Hugh Orde, the aim was to portray the Cameron government as being out of touch. “Leave it to the boys in blue” became the watchword.

Unfortunately the evidence of a lack of leadership and control from the higher echelons at the Met over the first 2/3 days of mob rule in parts of London was so overwhelming that the utterances of Orde and Co. had a very hollow ring.

But, as David Vance at Biased BBC noted yesterday, a new editorial line had been adopted by the BBC suits and programmed into the robotic Sarah Montague as she fed the appropriate cues to the former Director of Public Prosecutions, Lord Macdonald, over sentences handed out to looters. Naturally he came back with the appropriate response – “a collective loss of proportion” This triggered Sarah’s circuitry and produced the key phrase we shall be hearing over and over again at this weekend’s North London dinner parties.

Moral panic.

It’s all out of proportion, you see. There’s no real threat but a lot of opportunists have jumped on this bandwagon to further their own political agenda.

Moral panics allegedly arise when an event is perceived as a threat to society and its values. Those who foment the panic are said to be motivated by a fear of losing control. They therefore attempt to channel potentially disruptive energy by portraying another person or group – “folk devils” – as more of a danger than they actually are. So the Sarah Montague/BBC line appears to be that Cameron is using the riots as an opportunity to demonise the disenfranchised and divert attention from his austerity drive and, strangely enough, that was the angle recently taken by The New York Times…..surprise, surprise….

Heavy stuff, indeed…

But wait a minute – “no real threat but a bandwagon to further an agenda”……”folk devils”…..that seems to ring a bell….

Rupert Murdoch, Anders Breivik, bankers, EDL, AGW deniers, Israelis – now there is a collection of folk devils for you, always presented as the symbols of dark forces ever ready to take us back to some Thatcherite nightmare away from sweetness and light.

Moral panics? At the BBC it’s what we do…..

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18 August
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Those Riots…Should Cameron Listen To The NYT – Or Tell Them To STFU?

The New York Times, the house journal of the Obama administration, has obviously been given the nod from the White House to convey an important message to UK Prime Minister David Cameron from the Presidential golf course.

You have got it so wrong on the causes of those riots.

Mr. Cameron…..has blamed the looting and burning on a compound of national moral decline, bad parenting and perverse inner-city subcultures.

That is so naive.

It’s about being POOR, man. The rioting and looting was a cry for help from the blackberries of the penniless, starving hordes of England’s shanty towns as well as a political protest against Cameron’s savage budget cuts.

What’s that? These are scheduled cuts for 2012-2015? Spending for 2011 is still much the same as previous years?

Irrelevant.

It’s the perception,stupid…..the masses trust only the BBC and the BBC has, since May 2010, been constantly warning them about THE CUTS.

That is why the “protesters” (as the BBC preferred to call them) needed all those flat screen TVs. They were to be used as COMMUNITY SCREENS so that the downtrodden could bypass government propaganda and hear the truth from the BBC.

Fortunately President Obama from his years of executive experience in Chicago can redirect Mr Cameron back onto the path of righteousness.

You don’t solve these problems with “draconian punishments” and “excessive sentences”

Britain’s urban wastelands need constructive attention from the Cameron government, not just punishment. His government’s wrongheaded austerity policies have meant fewer public sector jobs and social services……..What Britain’s sputtering economy really needs is short-term stimulus, not more budget cutting.

That is how it was done in Chicago by Obama – and it is now, presumably, one of the safest cities in the western world.

So there you have it, Mr Cameron. The NYT is telling you to spend more money and ignore the debt and those scaremongers at the credit rating agencies. I am sure they could put you in touch with the Chinese bankers who have been so helpful to President Obama.

On the other hand…..perhaps you could just tell the NYT to STFU……

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25 July
Comments Off on The Deficit – Leadership Needed To Tell The People The Truth….

The Deficit – Leadership Needed To Tell The People The Truth….

My other piece of advice, Copperfield, said Mr. Micawber, you know. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and, in short, you are for ever floored. As I am!

Ah, Wilkins Micawber….if only you were in Washington to talk some sense to President Obama. The politicians might be able to conjure up some sort of last minute Debt Ceiling fix that can flatter the markets for a few microseconds but some would argue that it will really be like covering plague sores with heavy theatrical make up – and in a way the actor analogy is highly appropriate. Boston University’s Professor Laurence Kotlikoff sees the current situation as a piece of political theatre choreographed to distract the public from the cold stark facts of economic reality.

Let’s get real. The U.S. is bankrupt. Neither spending more nor taxing less will help the country pay its bills.

Kotlikoff differentiates between the “official” debt of approximately 14 trillion and what he calls actual net indebtedness of 202 trillion. The true extent of the government’s liabilities have been hidden by a deft piece of legerdemain, that oh so useful tool of the crooked accountant – relabelling.

Congress has been very careful over the years to label most of its liabilities“unofficial” to keep them off the books and far in the future.

But unofficial or not the liabilities are already there, dark clouds on the horizon that will never clear but will eventually blacken the whole sky.

Why?

We have 78 million baby boomers who, when fully retired, will collect benefits from Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid that, on average, exceed per-capita GDP. The annual costs of these entitlements will total about $4 trillion in today’s dollars. Yes, our economy will be bigger in 20 years, but not big enough to handle this size load year after year.
This is what happens when you run a massive Ponzi scheme for six decades straight, taking ever larger resources from the young and giving them to the old while promising the young their eventual turn at passing the generational buck.

This isn’t just a problem for America. It’s a problem for most of the western world. It’s the eternal confidence trick that promises rainbows and unicorns with just one rub of the genie’s lamp.

We shake our heads at the tortured self destruction of Amy Winehouse. We congratulate ourselves they we have never been weak enough to become enslaved to the drug dealers haunting the other side of the tracks. But in reality the massive amounts of debt carried by western governments are the symptoms of our own society’s addiction to robbing the future to pleasure the present.

Read the rest of Kotlikoff’s piece here – it paints a chilling picture but implicit within the message is the desperate need for political leaders who have the courage to tell the truth to their fellow citizens and the steel to confront the pied pipers of the Obama left or, as Jeff Randall of the UK Daily Telegraph calls them

media dons, Princeton’s Paul Krugman and British-born David Blanchflower, professor of economics at Dartmouth College, championing fiscal incontinence as the route to salvation.

In 1940, when Churchill promised the British people nothing but “blood, toil, tears, and sweat” it was the first time for decades that they had heard a politician treating them as adults by telling them the truth. They responded, not with despair but with a grim determination to confront the harsh realities of the present with a shared sacrifice so that future generations could live in peace and freedom.

That was leadership.

Where are the Churchills of the 21st century?

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21 July
Comments Off on Russian Girls Tell Friends “Strip For Putin” In Election Campaign…

Russian Girls Tell Friends “Strip For Putin” In Election Campaign…

Russian girl gets ready for election campaign by encouraging others to “Strip For Putin”….an idea for the USA? Would it get the vote out?

I am sure Robert Stacy McCain would approve….

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10 July
Comments Off on Politician Accused Of Bribing Voters – With Noodles…..

Politician Accused Of Bribing Voters – With Noodles…..

Perhaps Marie Antoinette really said “let them eat noodles”. But until now I never saw those seemingly inoffensive strips as the most effective way of persuading the electorate to put their marks against your name at the polling station.

It appears, however, that in Thailand, according to The Bangkok Post, some people see things differently.

The party she leads won a sweeping victory in the recent Thai election but Yingluck Shinawatra has been accused by her political opponents of bribing voters by handing out free noodles during the campaign.

They are saying this violated electoral law and therefore she should be disqualified from office and the election declared null and void.
The row centres around this picture which was seen by a local opposition activist who contacted party leaders.

Barefaced bribery, said Yingluck Shinawatra’s opponents.

Not so, say her supporters. A local noodle seller, Chongrak Waeokhok, 63, happens also to be an admirer of their leader so, knowing her heroine was going to be campaigning in the area, she paid for the ingredients herself and merely asked her to pose over the noodle pot.

According to Thai media electoral officials have completed their investigation and the report will be published shortly.

In the meantime if someone with a passing resemblance to a local politician comes up to you in a pub and says “psssst…want some noodles?” transfix them with a glare of icy honesty and reply “I am incorruptible” – or, on the other hand, just hold out a plate….

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